The four-day workweek is gaining lots of attention. But still, it’s in the testing stage whether the model can provide real benefits or not. Still, to retain productivity and retain workers, companies need to test a new working model. However, for deep analysis, let’s start discussing this from scratch:
What is a four-day workweek? Precise definition:
We know there are 40 working hours in one week. The concept of 40hrs/week was first introduced in 1920. But now the time is changing, and compressed work schedules are in demand. For instance, employees work 10 hours daily in a four-day week and complete their 40 hours weekly. So, either way, employees work 40 hours a week. The shorter week is a new approach, and many companies are exploring this new dimension. So, in a compressed workweek setting, you need to spend less time on the job. In this way, a company gets the chance to offer more flexibility to the workers. But everybody isn’t a fan of this working model because few companies think it’s not realistic.
Is a four-day workweek hit or miss?
The five-day work week was enough to drive you crazy because studies show that long working hours lead to depression. The long working hours could also induce depression, anxiety, insomnia, and other mental health conditions. However, labor organizations are instigating short work weeks due to this. Due to this, more than 30 businesses in the USA have switched to a four-day working week. These companies will apply this model for at least six months for research purposes. According to the stats, 83% of workers prefer a four-day work week as it’s good for mental health. However, from Japan to Iceland, the world is trying to test the effects of a four-day work week. Here are other stats that support this narrative.
- Three thousand three hundred employees work in 70 companies in the UK that have begun this model without any reduction in pay.
- Apart from this, according to the poll conducted in 2019, 36,000 Americans found that two third workers prefer this model.
The idea of getting equal pay in less time is fascinating. However, the four-day work week experiment has been under investigation since 1990. The main aim of companies is to keep employees engaged, productive, and on the payroll. So, even if you are on a remote work model, you can apply this model for more work-life balance.
How four-day is the work week model better? Pros and cons:
Microsoft Japan reported that the four-day workweek model had increased productivity by up to 40%. Apart from this, it’s a great way to increase productivity and employee satisfaction. Still, everything comes with positive and negative points. However, we are dividing this analysis into the following two sections.
Pros of the four-day workweek model:
According to Stanford University, the model deeply connects the relationship and productivity if we do a deep analysis. The employees who work five days a week feel less productive than those on a four-day working model. The model also increases work-life balance, loyalty, teamwork, and job satisfaction. However, the results are according to the most productive nations like Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, and Norway. These people work around 72 hours per week; on the other hand, Japan is nutritious for overwork and ranks on the 20th number for productivity.
Increased Motivation & less cost:
If employees work for less hours, then they feel motivated. It means if employees are burned out from working extra hours, they can’t give their 100%. However, in the 4-day work model, there will be reduced hours, and workers will feel more focused. In addition, there will be fewer expenditures if the working days are four. The expenses could be of different natures like maintenance, electricity, and day-to-day utility costs. According to the Henley business school, more than 51% of companies reported cost savings.
Better for employee’s mental health:
Mental health is one of the crucial factors that shouldn’t be ignored. Besides, working from home and fewer hours reduces anxiety and depression. This way, you can give more time to your loved ones and run errands on time. Additionally, fewer working hours lead to high performance and reduced absenteeism from work. However, all these things have a direct impact on employees’ mental health. If mental health is good, you will feel more relaxed and stress-free.
Here are a few other benefits of applying the four-day workweek model in your organization. So, let’s look:
- Better for employment as there will be less carbon footprint
- It makes the workplace more equal for men and women
- Healthier employees are good
- Fewer health issues
- Reduce absenteeism
- And if the working pattern is more flexible, it helps recruit and retain employees.
Furthermore, the less day working model makes the workplace happier, and employees feel more committed. As a result of all these efforts, employees will always be ready to take on new challenges.
Cons of four-day workweek:
The four-day workweek model doesn’t affect paystubs. But if the model has benefits, there are disadvantages as well. Paystub maker is widely used to keep track of income and tax deductions. But if you want to identify the cons of a four-day work week, then have a look at these points:
- Poor customer satisfaction as the public will be unable to access offices when they are closed
- It doesn’t go with all business models
- Long working hours can contribute to stress
- The four-day workweek can add tasks and result in overtime, and affect performance
Moreover, the working model doesn’t work well for all employees because their circumstances would be different.
In the end, a shorter week has many benefits, but it doesn’t fit all types of businesses well. So, if you are an organization, you will have to make a calculated decision considering the mission and goals of your organization. But employees can take advantage of this policy, assuming they receive the same pay. So, whatever the decision is, don’t forget to communicate goals on both sides.